Brett Kavanaugh & the ‘Shot Heard Round the World’

Not believing in force is the same as not believing in gravity.


I try not to be pessimistic about things, but I also try not to be unduly optimistic about things, either. I try to stay somewhere in the middle, but perhaps shade toward optimism. I like to consider myself and ‘open-minded realist’ this way. That being said, I feel very uneasy about the future of our nation in regards the Senate testimony of Judge Kavanaugh and his accuser. The word “circus” has been used to describe the proceedings more times than I care to count but is there any better word?

Let’s say (hope) Kavanaugh is confirmed to the Supreme Court. At the very least, a dangerous precedent has been set whereby any woman’s uncorroborated accusation of sexual assault by a man can deep six a career one has spent a lifetime creating, destroy a reputation dragging an entire family name through the mud along with it, and bring the wheels of a democratic process to a grinding halt. Meanwhile, John and Jane taxpayer, who are supposed bite their tongues and pretend this ain’t political, are left holding the bag. That’s best-case scenario.

If, on the other hand, Kavanaugh is not confirmed to the Supreme Court, (and I do sincerely hope this is not the outcome,) then the next ‘Shot Heard Round the World’ has officially been fired. The precedent set in such an event would be one of presumed guilt in all cases of sexual assault—irrespective of the time frame of the alleged assault, vagueness and non-specificity of the accusation, or lack of corroborating evidence.

And on the topic of that last bit, the “evidence” in this investigation was witness testimony of four individuals claiming to be at the scene the night of the alleged assault. In as far as the recollection of a drunken house party nearly four decades ago can be considered “evidence,” it would appear it supports Kavanaugh’s innocence as all four individuals (who decided against showing up at the hearing) all claim the man wasn’t even there that night.

So, if a woman can crawl out of the woodwork and conjure up a memory of an assault from decades ago (the type of assault that does not warrant a call to the police, mind you,) with no evidence whatsoever can demonize and catastrophically ruin a man with a solid track record for justice and faith in the rule of law (and a demonstrably good husband and father), where would that put us? Where would that put you or I? Where would that put any man who might have pretensions to making something out of himself? It puts him in the position of having to prove his innocence beyond a reasonable doubt, because in Kavanaugh’s case, the preponderance of the evidence, points to his innocence.

I’m trying to be an open-minded realist about all this but it’s sure getting’ hard these days. I don’t mean to alarm, but I think the time has come that we (sane people) consider the possibility that, in our lifetimes, we may need to physically defend ourselves and/or our homes from a large hostile force. That’s worst-case scenario.

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